He is chipped on the face of a cliff
in the gorge above the Colorado,
a stick figure with a circle for a head
and one eye.
In Utah he has three toes.
West of Taos bended knees.
It is the same man,
hunchbacked and playing a flute
on the wall of a cave north of Phoenix
and in a frieze on a boulder at El Morro.
He plays to a serpent near Flagstaff.
To the sun in the ruins of San Cristobel.
Everywhere in the stories
he comes at odd seasons,
piping and dissembling, wily peddler
who sends the maidens shrieking and giggling.
At Gila Bend he is dancing.
At Snaketown lies on his back.
On Pajarito Plateau has a remarkable phallus.
Across the deserts of California, wild hair.
Around a kiva at San Ildefonso, horns.
On the Hopi Mesa resembles an insect.
In the Canyon de Muerto a turtle.
Oliver Rice | Mudlark No. 41 (2010)
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